Voices from Kabul, Afghanistan: “You Can Take Our Lives, But Not Our Education”

“As a member of the Hazara diaspora, safe in my home in the U.S., it is painful for me to sit front of my computer and write about yet another mass killing. Are you not listening? Why does this continue to happen? … I am calling today for the urgent attention of the United States and the international community. We must re-think the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan. The lives of the Hazara depend on it.”

“Imminent Danger” in Afghanistan: Kamila Sidiqi in Conversation With Gayle Tzemach Lemmon

On Saturday, three car bombs detonated in Kabul, Afghanistan, in front of the Sayed Al-Shuhada school—specifically targeting young girls. At least 85 people were killed. The escalating violence in the country has been made worse by the recent Biden administration decision to withdraw troops from the region by September 11 of this year.

This interview between Kamila Sidiqi, an Afghan serial entrepreneur, and Gayle Tzemach Lemmon was conducted just days before the Kabul weekend attack, and gives a sense of the simultaneous sense of fear, hope and dread on the ground in Afghanistan.

Bipartisan Senate Concern for Security and Women’s Rights Post-U.S. Withdrawal from Afghanistan

In a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing this week, senators from across the political spectrum expressed concerns about the security situation in Afghanistan post-U.S. and NATO withdrawal this year. Committee members repeatedly expressed concerns on U.S. counter-terrorism operations, as well the future of human rights and women’s rights in Afghanistan.

Antony Blinken: Taliban Cannot Be Trusted With U.S. Security and Gains Must Be Protected

In his confirmation hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Tuesday, Antony Blinken promised to protect the hard-won gains of Afghan women and girls if confirmed as secretary of state. He said the Taliban cannot be trusted with U.S. national security, policing Al-Qaeda and ISIS regarding attacking U.S., and that a further withdrawal of U.S. troops will be conditions-based.